We're anticipating that the project will result in:
- highly significant ecological outcomes - more birds, lizards and bugs contributing to healthy functioning ecosystems
- significant economic benefits - for example, no more rats chewing wires or pipes
- social benefits - more connected communities working together for a common cause.
Initially the focus will be on developing a plan to eradicate rats and stoats from the Miramar Peninsula. We'll follow this with a strategy to extend this plan to introduced predators of native birds on the entire Wellington City area. Management of cats and dogs is not included in the scope of the proposed project. Engaging with the community will form a large part of the project and lessons learned by the Crofton Downs Predator Free group and others will inform both how we design and implement the project design. Expert advice will guide the development of the plan and strategy.
Miramar Peninsula is geographically well positioned to attempt a rat and stoat eradication. Possums were declared eradicated from Miramar Peninsula in 2006 by Greater Wellington Regional Council with support from Wellington City Council and the area is still possum-free. The Council already manages introduced predators of native animals across all its reserves in partnership with Greater Wellington Regional Council and a significant amount of reserve trapping work is done voluntarily by community groups. Greater Wellington Regional Council undertakes possum control in most of the rural area of Wellington City as well as areas within the Key Native Ecosystems programme.
Wellington City Council has a vision to become a smart, connected eco-city and has also committed to being a Biophilic City as part of an international programme. Biophilic Cities are cities that contain abundant nature; they are cities that care about, seek to protect, restore and grow this nature, and that strive to foster deep connections and daily contact with the natural world.
Our biodiversity strategy and action plan - Our Natural Capital - provides a context for the project.
Greater Wellington Regional Council, NEXT Foundation and Wellington City Council will jointly fund a project director to get the project underway. The total cost of the project has not yet been determined and will vary depending the level of community involvement and the methods used. As well as council and philanthropic investment, funding will be sought from central government’s Predator Free New Zealand 2050 organisation.
Greater Wellington Regional Council
Greater Wellington Regional Council’s vision for biodiversity is that “Healthy ecosystems thrive in the Wellington region and provide habitat for native biodiversity”
This vision is supported by three goals in their Biodiversity Strategy:
- Areas of high biodiversity value are protected or restored
- Ecosystem functions are maintained or restored across the landscape
- People understand and value biodiversity and ecosystems
Greater Wellington Regional Council works towards this vision by working with private landowners, territorial authorities and a range of stakeholders in the community across the Wellington region.
The Council recognises that by contributing to the objectives and outcomes of a predator-free Wellington will significantly contribute to achieving its long-term vision for the region.
NEXT Foundation has engaged Kelvin Hastie as the NEXT Predator Free Community Champion.
Kevin spearheaded the successful Predator Free Crofton Downs project and has since extended that to other communities. Kelvin’s new role will be to help with the Wellington Predator Free project and ultimately other communities in the wider vision for New Zealand to be Predator Free by 2050.
NEXT Foundation’s vision is to create a legacy of environmental and educational excellence for the benefit of future generations of New Zealanders.
NEXT Foundation is a strategic philanthropic investor which supports projects that:
- are significant in scale and impact, overcome a specific need or create future opportunities
- are well supported by research and analysis, that have good management and governance
- have effective metric systems, defined outcomes, and measurable objectives
- are sustained in the long term
- have the greatest potential to inspire and create lasting value for New Zealanders.
NEXT views New Zealand’s natural environment as the foundation of not only our economy but also our sense of identity. NEXT’s vision is to ensure our natural environment remains healthy so that it will continue to provide us with the essential resources that underpin a thriving and prosperous New Zealand.
You can still contribute while the Predator Free Wellington plan is being developed. Here are some ideas: